NEW Doctor Who star Ncuti Gatwa has praised Netflix hit Sex Education for making him one of the hottest actors in showbiz.
The Netflix comedy series, which debuted in 2019, is about to air its fourth and final episode as viewers learn more about the fate of the crazy characters.
Ncuti, who grew up in Dunfermline, Fife, rose to fame after being cast as Eric Effiong, best friend of Otis, played by Asa Butterfield and one of Moordale Secondary’s most complex characters as he explores his faith and sexuality.
The 30-year-old, who just starred in the blockbuster Barbie film alongside Margot Robbie and Ryan Gosling, can’t believe how far he’s come just four years after being brought back from obscurity.
He said: “Bittersweet is definitely the word I would use. It’s a really pleasant environment and a pleasant group of people to work with, and so we just wanted to enjoy every moment.
“It’s been so nice to work with the people I’ve worked with over the last three years and being by Asa’s side was the best thing I could have done.
“It changed the course of my life and career. It has opened doors for me and given me some really great friends.
“You learn so much about yourself from playing a character for so long, especially a character who goes through such pivotal and transformative moments in their life.
“When you work on a show like Sex Education, which deals with so many topics and themes, you have to constantly think about what it all means, inside and outside of the script. It definitely had a big impact on my life and career.”
In “Sex Education” the teenager recognizes Otis, who is being trained by the sex therapist Jean, played by Nude
He founded his own school clinic where he counseled his fellow students, and the program’s unique storylines earned millions of fans around the world.
But the series also makes many serious points and attempts to portray people and issues that are often overlooked on the small screen.
For Ncuti, who came out as queer last month, he really appreciated the chance to play a black, gay teenager from a religious family.
The Rwandan-born actor will replace David Tennant, who played the Time Lord twice, as the 15th Doctor later this year.
He said: “I loved playing a character who is in the middle of a lot of different things: a character who is black and gay and not ashamed of those two elements.”
“In fact, they fit together seamlessly and I just liked that. It was the performance I always wanted to see as a child, and I know it touched many other people.
“If there are places in the world where it’s illegal to be gay, where it’s illegal to be queer, where one’s existence is illegal – and there are places where girls aren’t allowed to go to school – then TV shows like this really important.”
“I am very grateful that I was able to be part of a project that gives people hope. Not just hope, but also escapism.
“Escapism is very effective when you are unable to change your situation. This can be a saving grace.”
The fourth season of Sex Education arrives on September 21st and deals with the aftermath of the previous episode following the closure of Moordale Secondary.
Otis and Eric are about to start their first day together at Cavendish Sixth Form College and both are worried.
But Cavendish is a culture shock for all Moordale students – as it is the “wokest” place in the world.
There is daily yoga in the community garden, a strong sustainability vibe, and a group of children known for their kindness.
Otis longs for Maeve, played by Emma Mackey, as she pursues her dream in the USA at the prestigious Wallace University and is taught by cult author Thomas Molloy
While Jackson, played by Kedar Williams-Stirling, tries to get over Cal, played by Dua Saleh, and Aimee, brought to life by Aimee Lou Wood, completes an arts degree, and Connor Swindells’ character Adam deals with the The question is whether general education makes sense.
Butterfield, 26, reckons he will miss the series as much as his pal Ncuti and hopes it leaves a lasting legacy.
He says: “I think this show will be remembered for a long time, especially for the younger generations.
“I hope it helps fans find their own strength and find a world that they can relate to, that makes them feel like everything is normal and okay and everyone has to go through this.”
“It covers a lot of themes, but underneath it’s about love, warmth and friendship and not just youth but coming of age.
“I think there are characters that everyone can see themselves in and identify with, and that’s something special.”
Ncuti was so excited about the program that he even felt the need to take a souvenir home with him.
And while it wasn’t anything extravagant, it fit the theme of sex education perfectly.
He says: “I took some makeup: there’s an Isamaya lipstick that Eric uses in a scene before he meets a very special character in season four, and the lipstick is shaped like a penis – so I did took him.”
Butterfield asked about Otis’ famous jacket and Swindells has Adam’s porcelain figurine that looks like his dog, Madam.
But there’s one aspect of the job that Ncuti won’t ignore as the cast plots their next career moves.
He jokes: “Before I started I didn’t know how to ride a bike and they sat me on a hill with a French horn and a school bag on my back.
“Yeah, I definitely won’t miss these hills. But I’ll definitely miss getting up to mischief with Asa on those bikes.”
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